xTalk: Guided Discovery as a Teaching Method, Dec. 6, 2018 | MIT J-WEL

xTalk: Guided Discovery as a Teaching Method, Dec. 6, 2018


xTalks Digital Discourse Series: Guided Discovery as a Teaching Method with Prof. Emanuel "Ely" Sachs


December 6, 2018

3:00- 4:00 p.m.
ROOM 1-246



The term “Guided Discovery” refers to a teaching and learning environment where students are actively participating in discovering knowledge. The goal of discovery is to facilitate deep learning on the part of the students – learning that has its basis in fundamental understanding and often arises from viewing a problem from multiple perspectives. The pedagogical underpinning is that if the students discover the knowledge, they will, in the process, have created and added to their own scaffolded understanding. They will have formulated and evaluated hypotheses, rejected those that don’t seem to explain observations, confronted misconceptions, encountered surprises and finally come to an understanding that comports with experiment. By re-creating knowledge which already exists but is heretofore unknown to them, students will progress in learning how to create new knowledge, and they will have training in inductive reasoning – the method used to create most human knowledge.

This highly interactive presentation will showcase some of the guided discoveries used, in collaboration by Prof. Sachs and his colleagues, in teaching 2.001. Data on student response will be presented.

Emanuel “Ely” Sachs is the Fred Fort Flowers and Daniel Fort Flowers Professor of Mechanical Engineering. He has been recognized for pioneering new approaches to teaching undergraduate education, focusing on active, hands-on participation by students in the discovery of knowledge.


About xTalks Digital Discourses

xTalks: Digital Discourses is a seminar series to facilitate awareness, deep understanding and transference of educational innovations at MIT and elsewhere. xTalks forums share strategies, solutions, and issues related to transformation in educational practice, particularly through the use of digital technologies. Their programs build on and extend legacy forums and forums already in place such as the HHMI Education Group (HHMI is the Howard Hughes Medical Institute), CrosstalkTLL's DUET (Dean of Undergraduate Education Talk series through the Teaching and Learning Lab), the RELATE research group (RELATE is Research in Learning And Teaching Effectively), and more.


Date & Time: 
Thursday, December 6, 2018 - 15:00